Fed Chairman Highlights BCC's Foreclosure Work
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke highlighted Boston Community Capital's foreclosure relief work in a speech today at the Federal Reserve’s Community Affairs Research Conference in Arlington. The Fed Chairman cited BCC's Stabilizing Urban Communities (SUN) Initiative as a model for how "local communities are meeting the challenges of tough times in troubled communities."
Boston Community Capital is pursuing an innovative strategy to prevent occupied homes from becoming vacant and creating a strain on the community. Through special financing entities, it buys foreclosed-upon but still occupied homes from lenders at market value. The initiative, dubbed Stabilizing Urban Neighborhoods, or SUN, is focused on six low-income neighborhoods in Boston that have the city's highest concentration of foreclosures. Taking advantage of the diminished home values, the group buys the properties and then resells them at affordable prices to existing occupants--both owners and tenants--who can demonstrate that they have suffered hardship. This program prevents properties from becoming vacant and provides families with a sustainable and affordable housing situation; it is designed to start small and expand as needed.